Olympic Love, Part 2

March 13, 2010

The Olympic love continued in Germany. When we arrived at the Munich airport, Noah was ecstatic to see a bobsled and sign advertising the German bid to host the 2018 Winter Olympics. And then we got to Garmisch where we were surrounded by some very striking reminders of the 1936 Winter Olympics. Our first Olympic experience was ice skating at the Olympic rink. Like most things in life, it looks much easier on tv! It turned out to be a fun and humbling family outing. Noah impressed all of us by jumping right in there and quickly learning his way around the rink. Thank goodness the rink had these little gnome guys that were perfect for first time skaters. I think they were probably intended for kids, but I grabbed one whenever it was free!After that we headed to lunch at the Olympia Hause which was used during the Olympics. We didn't know it at the time of our lunch, but Hitler stood on the terrace of the Olympia Hause during the Olympics since it is in the center of everything. And that brings me to the part of our trip that had me feeling a jumble of things while in Germany. One moment I felt awed to be in such an inspiring and beautiful location, flip flopped with anger and anxiety that in the not so distant past our little family would not have been welcomed (and worse) in the very same spot, quickly followed by pride that my Jewish children were gleefully sledding and skiing on the same mountains that Nazis tried to make their own. I am not alone in these conflicted feelings. It will be interesting to see what happens with Germany's bid for the 2018 Olympics.

After our filling German lunch we went sledding at the base of the ski jump (have you ever seen a ski jump in person? I couldn't get over how huge and scary it looked! I can't imagine doing that or watching my child do that). And the next day the winter sports experiences continued. Adam hit the slopes for some great skiing while Noah and Camille attended the German ski school. Noah loved skiing and continued to take lessons for the next two day
s, Camille was not so fond of it and chose to spend her time rolling and playing in the snow. I opted to drink hot cocoa and watch from the lodge.And here's one of the most exciting things that happened: we had the chance to meet members of the US Ski Team. They were in town for the World Cup Finals (we could see the downhill course from our balcony). All of them were so friendly and approachable. One of the most memorable moments was when Lindsey Vonn let the kids hold her Olympic gold medal. Noah is already begging for another ski trip and trying to convince us to move someplace where he could ski all winter. I enjoyed our snowy adventures,but I have to admit that I am glad we were just visiting and not living there full time....it's cold and it's a lot of work to get everyone bundled up and undressed after each outing!
likeschocolate said...

What fun photos! I am glad you had such a great time in Germany. It has a very quiet charm.

Karen said...

Hey, isn't that Anikan Skywalker in the orange suit?! Sorry, we have Star Wars on the brain around here. Glad your trip was such a success!- K

Manny said...

Oh Lucia, sooo jealous! I remember seeing that ski jump and having the same thoughts you did - people jump OFF that?
And good on Lindsey for spending time with the troops. She's class all the way.

Manny said...

Actually just saw the rest of the pics. Good on the team for making it to Edelweiss! The man to Lindsey's left is Ted Ligety - he won the Giant Slalom title yesterday! (Lindsey, of course, won the overall for the third year in a row, but who's counting?)

Dim Sum, Bagels, and Crawfish said...

Karen, that is exactly the reason Noah insists on keeping his hair long...you are not the first to point out the resemblance...Star Wars is big around our house, too :)

Manny, we really wish you guys could have been with us!!! We need to do another Whistler-like trip in the near future. And by the way Ted Ligety is also super nice...in addition to being a World Cup winner. We were very impressed by all of the athletes that night. And by the way... those Olympic medals weigh a ton.

Dana said...

Lucky you! Olympians at Edeilweiss. I have some friends who will be oh-so-envious when I share this bit of info with them. Did you know in advance that they would be there?

You know, I'm a Catholic girl (not necessarily a good one), and I still get a bit of a strange feeling when in Germany. I know that I shouldn't. . . but I do. I continue to visit in spite of that feeling, hoping familiarity will help.


Laurie said...

That is so cool - what an adventure!

aimee said...

how fabulous!!

have you seen stephanie levy's blog 'a studio with a view'? she's an american artist living in germany and her posts are delightful - a great place to get your germany fix after you return!

Jocelyn said...

How very cool of Lindsey Vonn! I'm impressed with the ski lessons (and the hot cocoa drinking; never think I'm underestimating the effort you put in to relaxing).

Your comment about the effort to get dressed and undressed makes me happy, anew, that spring is on its way. Our radiators are always covered with wet outdoor clothes.

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